ASHLEY — No one would have imagined a year ago face masks would become a daily accessory, but because of the COVID-19 pandemic, so too have they become a new form of litter. Students at Buckeye Valley East Elementary are hoping to make a difference in the community by bringing awareness to the issue.
Students in Ms. Johnson and Ms. Leathers third grade classes were encouraged to identify a problem and come up with a solution during their “Changing the World” unit. Both teachers agreed that his year presented unique problems, and the students discussed many options. Ultimately, the students decided to launch a campaign to encourage proper mask disposal.
“The project started out small — a video highlighting the problem and a change.org petition asking for the community’s help,” Leathers said. “We decided that if we could get 100 signatures we would place mask collection bins in our building.”
As the project took off, the students got more excited about their cause.
The teachers explained that part of the writing unit encouraged students to think of their audience. After much research and watching several of Gov. Mike DeWine’s press conferences, the students decided that the governor himself would be a perfect audience member. They then set their goal a little higher with the hope that Gov. DeWine will acknowledge their cause and promote the proper disposal of masks.
“We are now hoping to get 1,000 signatures on our change.org petition so the students can present it to the governor with the hope of having him encourage the proper disposal of masks in public places,” Johnson said.
Buckeye Valley East Principal Dr. Katie Karacson said she’s proud of her students and their desire to make a change in the world
“The students found a relevant, real-world problem that they were passionate about and worked collaboratively to develop and put into action a plan for a solution,” she said. “Individuals of every age can be change agents, and it is important for students, even at a young age, to realize this. Their commitment to the project is inspiring to individuals of all ages.”
To view the video, See.Notice.Change., and to participate in the change.org petition, visit the Buckeye Valley District website at https://www.buckeyevalley.k12.oh.us.